Tony John, Port Harcourt
The Economic and Financial Crimes Commission (EFCC) said it has recovered cash of over N1.5 billion from people being investigated for alleged fraudulent practices in the South-South zone of the country.
This Commission has also revealed syndicate that specialises on defrauding the public with the issuance of fake National Examination Council (NECO) and West Africa Examination Council (WAEC) results through the online media to their victims.
The Director, South-South zone of the Commission, Nnaghe Obono-Itam, disclosed this, on Wednesday, while briefing journalists on the achievements of anti-graft body in Port Harcourt, Rivers State.
Obono-Itam said that the suspects were arrested from different areas of the zone, adding that during investigations, the mentioned amount was recovered.
He also revealed that cash of $678, 354.80 and 5,254.20 Euros were recovered from suspects, who have already been charged to court for legal action.
The zonal EFCC boss said, “Between second and third quarters of this year, we have done recoveries of N1, 592, 568, 524.38, made up of N466, 486, 038.68 and N1, 126, 082, 485.07, as money held in account.
“Out of that, we have N1, 000, 036, 448.06 on interim forfeiture with the Federal Government.
“We also have a total recovery of $678, 354.80, cash of $402, 425.89 and we have $275, 928.91 in account of Post No Deposit (PND) as well.
“We have 5, 254.20 Euros with 5,225 Euros as cash and 29.20 Euros in account of PND.”
Obono-Itam, who did not disclosed the names of the suspects, since they had already been charged to court.
He continued, “Over 221 cases have been forwarded to legal for advice, with 44 cases charged to court and 16 convictions achieved through the three quarters of this year.”
On the fake school results syndicate, he said: “We had, in the second quarter, received a complaint about a syndicate that uses online medium to sell fake results for WAEC, NECO and the rest.
“I am glad to say that we have been able to break that syndicate”.
The EFCC boss also commended the 6 Division of the Nigerian Army, Port Harcourt, for its tactical efforts, for arresting 283 trucks for loading illegally refined petroleum products.
He added that 15 vessels, nine barges and two wooden boats under investigation, were received by the commission.
Obomo-Itam said that owners of the trucks were unaware of the nefarious activities of the drivers, adding that some trucks owners have not reported to claim ownership of their trucks.
He said 59 trucks and about 1, 180, 000 litres of products have been temporarily forfeited to the Federal Government.